Cardlytics has been running its targeted advertising platform for online and mobile banking in the US for a few years now, but today it’s launching in Europe through a partnership with the Lloyds Banking Group.

The concept is incredibly lucrative for banks and other brands, but has the potential to unsettle some of its users.

Cardlytics gives retailers the ability to display their adverts next to specific transactions on an account holder’s bill or statement. A card payment to Starbucks, for instance, could be used by the global coffee chain or one of its competitors to run a discount or promotion alongside it.

A bank statement, after all, is a true indication of what users are really prepared to spend their hard-earned cash on. Tap into their spending habits and brand loyalty, and retailers have the chance to increase their sales rather dramatically.

The Lloyds Banking Group will serve up these adverts to its Halifax customers in the UK under a promotion called ‘Halifax Cashback Extras’, due to launch in September with “dozens of retailers” onboard, including Argos, O2, Morrisons, New Look and Homebase.

Account holders will be able to earn between 5 and 15 percent cashback if they choose to click on one of the new offers shown next to their statement. The activation is tied to their account, which means there is no codes or physical vouchers to speak of. The cashback is applied automatically and retailers are able to keep tabs on the success of their promotions.

It’s worth emphasizing though that while Cardlytics in the US is typically opt-out, thereby signing consumers up automatically, the implementation in the UK appears to be opt-in; account holders won’t receive the offers unless they specifically register for ’Halifax Cashback Extras’.

Cardlytics launched Facebook integration earlier this year, giving banks a new avenue to interact with their customers and advertise the offers pitched by retailers. Provided they’re suitable, customers could discover and redeem some worthwhile discounts, but banks will need to tread carefully to ensure it doesn’t irritate account holders.

Cardlytics wants to expand into the rest of Europe, as well as Latin America and Asia. There will almost certainly be a demand from retailers and banks, but striking the right balance with customers will be the key to its success.

Cardlytics

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